Tips, tricks, and advice to keep your ride running smooth

When most people think about prepping their vehicle for a change in the weather, they usually think about winterization– checking their anti-freeze, stocking the car with emergency supplies, and the like. In the rush to make sure your car runs well in the winter; you might be forgetting that the transition from winter to spring is just as important.

That means that if you aren’t taking the right steps to prep your car for spring, you’re seriously missing out; at best, you’re forsaking a great opportunity to keep your car in great condition (and to help it maintain it’s value). At worst, you could be allowing serious damage to happen to your vehicle.

Take a look under the hood

Checking out the status of your engine and other essential parts under your car’s hood should be your first priority; if that isn’t in good shape, neither is your vehicle. First, you should check engine fluids to make sure they’re full– this can easily be done by taking out the fluid bottle’s dipstick and making sure the fluid reaches the fill line.

Next, look at your battery to check for signs of excess corrosion. A tiny bit of rust or discoloration is probably okay, but a lot may mean that melted snow or other liquids have caused damage to the battery’s exterior. It’s better to replace a damaged battery now than wait for it to die when you’re in a rush– or worse, far away from home.

After checking on these main areas, you might want to check out other things, like your spark plugs. Especially if you’ve been having trouble starting your car in the morning or your car is less than responsive when you try to accelerate; it could be a spark plug issue.

Make sure your car’s paint job is in tip-top shape

Snow, ice, hail, sleet, extreme rain and other winter weather phenomenon can cause major damage to your car’s exterior– but even if you don’t see anything obvious, it’s a good idea to check carefully around your tires and other areas to make sure paint hasn’t been removed.

Keeping your car’s paint job in shape isn’t just about looks, as most people can deal with little blemishes if they don’t have repairs in the budget. It’s also about keeping your car in good shape for the long run. Just a little bit of exposed metal on your car’s exterior could lead to rust after being exposed to spring rain, which could spread to other areas of the vehicle, reducing your car’s value and ruining the whole paint job (not just a tiny bit).

Windshields and tires need some love, too

If you’re not already regularly checking your car’s tire pressure, now is a great time to do so. Changes in temperature can result in the expansion of your tires, which could cause problems like internal damage or loss of pressure. If your tire pressure isn’t up to par, you could be losing serious gas mileage, as well as setting yourself up for other problems down the line, such as flat tires.

In terms of your windshield, the first thing you should do is to check your wiper blades. It’s a good idea to replace these once a year, and there’s no better time than spring (especially if they look frayed or damaged after heavy winter use). Also, make sure to check and replace your wiper fluid. There’s nothing worse than a nasty, sticky, or otherwise contaminated fluid gunking up (or even scratching) your car’s windshield.

No matter where you live, giving your car a seasonal checkup is never a bad idea

Whether you live in Alaska or Hawaii, and whether your idea of winterization involves stocking up on antifreeze or opening the windows and finally turning the A/C off, a spring checkup can help you identify small car problems before they become big ones.

To learn more about safety tips that can help you and your family for every season, contact Avante Insurance today for a free consultation.